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THE BOONIES (2021)
Directed by Lance Parkin.
Written by Lance Parkin, Matt Schultz.
Starring Matt Schultz, Vincent Bombara, Daniel Johnson, Andreas O’Rourke, Krista Graham, James Quinn, David Ogrodowski, Jess Uhler, Dave McMillan, Rick Dutrow, Ben Dietels, Christine Mancini, James Howard, Bridget McCullough, Ian D. McMillan, Blake O’Donnell
A group of guys go on a hiking trip for a bachelor party and accidentally enter the territory of a weird cannibal family, not your normal kind of cannibal family. The weird kind.
THE BOONIES is just your typical hiking slash cannibal family horror film. There are a whole bunch of victims trouncing around in the woods and being out of their element. There are a group of cannibal hunters using various weaponry and knowledge of the forest to track and kill them. If you’ve seen THE BURNING or WRONG TURN or anything in between those two films, you’ve seen this one. Still, it follows the well-blazed trail of many, many horror films before it.
That’s not necessarily a bad thing. It does the cannibal family thing decently enough. The acting is not as bad as other films made on this budget. Even though the lines aren’t the smoothest or most natural, the actors do their best at being likable and relatable before they end up on the business end of the hunters’ knives.
The blood isn’t extraneous, keeping within the low budget parameters. The score is simplistic but works at conveying its primitive tone. But filmmaker Lance Parkin takes advantage of the heavily forested environment and builds some suspenseful scenes where the killers stalk their prey. There’s a fun scene where a captured woman is forced to her boyfriend being slurped and devoured by the killers in the next room that uses disgusting sounds effectively well, focusing only on the woman’s face. There’s also a twist to the final “girl” trope as wedding bells sound for one unlucky camper. This one’s apes the TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE a bit too much and even culminates with the very tired scene at a dinner table. There’s not a lot new to see here. But I didn’t mind my time with THE BOONIES. And as long as you aren’t expecting anything game-changing, it is a film that clocks in, does its job, and leaves at quitting time without straying from the norm or sticking its neck out.